Using Language Well Book 1 Student Book



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Using Language Well Book 1 Student Book

(5 customer reviews)


Pair Using Language Well with Spelling Wisdom to teach spelling, English usage, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and composition through great literature! (Grades 3 and 4)

Note: Using Language Well uses the dictation passages in the corresponding Spelling Wisdom book. You will also need the Using Language Well, Book 1 teacher guide and answer key. We have a bundle that includes everything you need.
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Product Description

Help your student grow in language arts skills through great literature!

Using Language Well, Book 1, is a Charlotte Mason language arts curriculum designed to be a companion to Spelling Wisdom, Book 1, which contains wonderful excerpts from great literature, worthy poetry, beautiful Scripture, and powerful quotations. Now you can use those same great literary passages to teach English usage, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and composition!

Pair Using Language Well, Book 1, with Spelling Wisdom, Book 1, to

  • Give your student a rich literary approach to language arts in grades 3 and 4.
  • Help your student discover for himself key points of English usage, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and elements of good writing.
  • Keep interest and attention high through short lessons just twice a week.
  • Confidently guide and evaluate your student’s progress in composition with the helpful tips and practical tools in the Teacher Guide & Answer Key.

Get the bundle!

Everything you need for spelling and language arts the Charlotte Mason way in one convenient bundle.

What’s Covered in Book 1?

Book 1 is designed to last for two years. When your student completes Using Language Well, Book 1 (with Spelling Wisdom, Book 1), he will be able to

  • identify each mark of punctuation in a sentence and explain why it is used there;
  • alphabetize the months of the year;
  • identify and define homonyms, synonyms, and antonyms;
  • correctly spell irregular plural words;
  • use a and an correctly;
  • analyze contractions and compound words;
  • detail prefixes, suffixes, and root words;
  • identify types of sentences, syllables, and stanzas in a poem;
  • and more! (See a complete list in the Placement Guide below.)

He will also have written from transcription (for grade 3) or dictation (for grade 4) hundreds of sentences from good literature.

You can adjust the length of the transcription or dictation passages from Spelling Wisdom to best fit your student. For third graders (completing Exercises 1–70), we recommend that you assign the whole passage to be transcribed and occasionally ask the student to spell two or three words from the passage from memory. For students in fourth grade (completing Exercises 71–140), we recommend that you assign up to the whole passage to be studied, then dictate one or two sentences.

The Teacher Guide

The Teacher Guide for Using Language Well, Book 1, provides clear answers to every question in the Student Book, but it also gives you so much more! You will find helpful and thorough explanations sprinkled throughout the lessons to encourage you in the Charlotte Mason way of doing language arts, plus a step-by-step plan to help your student grow in composition through his narrations. Guidance is given to help a student make the transition from oral narration to written narration in grade 4. All the practical tools you need to evaluate his writing are included.

Order one Using Language Well student book per student. The Using Language Well Teacher Guide and the corresponding Spelling Wisdom book are reusable.

The Using Language Well Series

All Using Language Well books build upon previous ones and include English, grammar, and writing points. Each book serves a unique role in the series.

Book 1—Basic Capitalization, Punctuation, and Usage
Contractions • Sentences • Plurals • Possessives • Synonyms, Antonyms, Homonyms • Capitalization • Punctuation • Alphabetizing • Prefixes and Suffixes

Book 2—Parts of Speech
Nouns • Pronouns • Adjectives • Verbs • Adverbs • Interjections • Articles • Conjunctions • Prepositions

Book 3—Sentence Analysis
Subjects • Predicates • Subject Complements • Verbals • Phrases • Clauses • Introduction to Poetry Analysis

Book 4—Composition Sharpening
Book 5—Advanced Composition

Placing Your Student

Download the placement guide

Use the book topics listed above to help you determine which book to start with. For example, if your student already has a good grasp on basic capitalization and punctuation (covered in Book 1) but hasn’t yet studied parts of speech, start with Book 2. Complete two lessons per week, right along with Spelling Wisdom, and a book will last two years: Lessons 1–70 in the first year and Lessons 71–140 in the second.

The grade levels are not the final say, but if you’re curious, here is one way we envision the Using Language Well series being used through the grades:

  • Grades 3 and 4—Book 1 (Lessons 1–70 incorporate transcription; Lessons 71–140 make the transition to prepared dictation.)
  • Grades 5 and 6—Book 2
  • Grades 7 and 8—Book 3
  • Grades 9 and 10—Book 4
  • Grades 11 and 12—Book 5 (optional)

If your student has already completed a Spelling Wisdom book’s dictation exercises, you can still work through its corresponding Using Language Well lessons and either omit or review dictation portions as desired.

For example, let’s say you have already done the dictation exercises in Spelling Wisdom, Book 1, and are ready to start Book 2, but you think your student will benefit from studying the punctuation, capitalization, and English usage lessons in Using Language Well, Book 1. You could easily set aside the Spelling Wisdom, Book 2, for a few weeks and focus on working through the Using Language Well book you have missed. Most lessons take only a few minutes, so you could do several per week by leaving out the dictation portions you have already done. Once you have completed the lessons in Using Language Well, Book 1, you could pick back up and start doing the exercises of Spelling Wisdom, Book 2, along with the lessons in Using Language Well, Book 2.

Additional Information

Dimensions11 × 8.5 in


E-book, Spiral, Stapled


79, 151


Grade 3, Grade 4, Parent Resource

Lesson Plan

Individual Studies, Grade 3, Individual Studies, Grade 4


5 reviews for Using Language Well Book 1 Student Book

  1. elizabeth

    Hi! I actually have a question! I have purchased Spelling Wisdom 1 and 2. I would like to get the Using Language Well 1 and 2…can I just order the Using Language Well Teacher Guides and teach from that? Or is it absolutely necessary to order the Student books as well? Just on a tight budget this year and want to be certain of what all I need.
    Thank you,
    Elizabeth Whalley

    • Tamara Bell

      Hi Elizabeth,
      You will need Using Language Well Student Books. The Teacher’s Guide is the answer key as well as writing rubrics for both students and teachers.

  2. Anna

    This is our second year using this book(used the first half for third grade and now using the second half for fourth grade). I’m SO pleased with this method. I wasn’t sure at first since it’s nothing like traditional language arts that you see in traditional school settings. I would highly encourage people to try it!! It takes us only about 15 min two times a week and I’m amazed at how much my daughter is learning without it feeling like learning. I often hear people talking about how they do LA every day and for 30-45 min at a time and how frustrated their kids are and how much they dislike writing. I feel that this program is a great fix for that! I’m so thankful to be using it! Thanks SCM!!

  3. Linsey

    Started this with my 9 year old son this year. So wonderful. Short and sweet, but right to the point. Perfect for a busy boy.

  4. Susehatch

    We are very interested in using this language arts curriculum this year for our Grade 3 son, but I have a question. The video and placement guide indicate that if your child is not yet ready for the Book 1 set (ours is, according to the guide), you should look to Hymns in Prose. But when I examine the Individual Studies curriculum for Grade 3, it includes the Book 1 set as well as Hymns in Prose for Track B. Since we did Track A last year in Grade 2, we thought we would be moving onto to Track B this year. So my question is this: is the Hymns in Prose a stepping stone to the Book 1 set, or is it to be used in conjunction with the Book 1 set?

    Thank you so much for these valuable resources!

    • Tamara Bell

      Hymns in Prose has 3 separate resources, the reader, the teacher book (optional – to help with guided reading lessons if the student needs more guided reading instruction) and the copybook. If your student is able to write on small lines and can read the examples in the video, then he is ready for all of track B, including Spelling Wisdom & Using Language Well (we find additional copywork and reading aloud beneficial). If he is not able to read the examples and needs practice writing small, then we encourage you to utilize track B but omit Spelling Wisdom & Using Language Well for this school year.

  5. Julia

    I bought this last year but my child wasn’t quite ready for the program so it’s been shelved for about 18 months. This year we started with another all-in-one language arts curricula and it’s just not a good fit. My 9 yr old daughter is exceptionally gifted in reading but is now ready for grammar concepts as well as improving her spelling. This course is amazing! It’s short, simple and to the point. The review doesn’t drone on and lessons are done in minutes for both spelling and ULW together. These books build vocabulary naturally while further exposing our children to truly beautiful and rich quotes, verses, etc. She loves all-things Robert Louis Stevenson and was thrilled to have one of his poems to study last week. It’s not overwhelming nor does it bog her down with writing as that is the area she struggles most with; the physical mechanics of such. We can do it anywhere, inside or out, couch, bed, table, or floor. It is written in a conversational tone that is neither over the child’s head nor is it condescending. I am very pleased with it! So much so, I’ll be using this with our 2nd child when she is old enough. I feel this would truly be a great fit for her, even though she is opposite of her older sister, and struggles with all-things reading and concentration. It might look overly simplified with the previews especially if one compares it to another program. Please be assured that this is indeed a robust program but Sonya cuts out the busy work and gets straight to the meat. No more tears and grumbles or taking 45 minutes per lesson while the toddler and baby are losing their patience. No more cutting out what she doesn’t need in the lesson and pulling in multiple resources for what she does need. It’s a major time saver! Thank you!

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